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Crossbows - Everything about Building, Modding, and Using your Crossbow Gear

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    string waxing question

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    Frode
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    Post by Frode on Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:32 pm

    Silly question, probably, but better silly questions than silly excuses.
    There's no need to wax the loops, is there?
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    Post by stoneagebowyer on Sat Mar 17, 2012 6:46 pm

    You wax the entire string for a bow, don't you? Why not the entire crossbow string? Couldnt hurt, in any case.

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    Post by basileus on Sun Mar 18, 2012 2:45 am

    stoneagebowyer wrote:You wax the entire string for a bow, don't you? Why not the entire crossbow string? Couldnt hurt, in any case.

    Dane
    Yes, makes sense. Also, you don't need to wax some materials, e.g. Dynema. Or so the manufacturer(s) claim. Additionally, some materials are prewaxed (e.g. Dacron B-50).
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    Post by Frode on Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:49 am

    Sounds reasonable to me, too. The loop servings are nylon, which I haven't waxed on the past on longbow strings, but maybe should.
    Thanks,
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    Post by stoneagebowyer on Mon Mar 19, 2012 2:30 pm

    Wax is cheap, buddy, so why not? I always wax the entire bowsting, including the loops. And even if a material is pre-waxed, wax it anyway. You will feel like the Karate Kid (that joke dates me lol).

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    Post by ferdinand on Thu Apr 26, 2012 7:00 am

    I had some difficulties finding wax so i used white wealbearing grease instead!
    And it makes the wood shine, preserves the metal and is nice and thick when its cold, viscosity goes down real fast when it warms up in use.

    I had a can of it in the garage, easy choice.
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    Post by mac on Thu Apr 26, 2012 8:34 am

    Frode wrote:Silly question, probably, but better silly questions than silly excuses.
    There's no need to wax the loops, is there?
    Frode
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    Frode,

    I just looked again at this picture. Are you building a rebec?!

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    Post by Frode on Thu Apr 26, 2012 3:32 pm

    Hmmm, I'd never have thought of wheel bearing grease, but it sounds good!

    Mac, yes! Actually, I have already made one, and the picture in the photo is taken from an old blueprint from a secondary source. Mine was from a variety of sources, combined with my general lack of knowledge. Pin cherry body, maple finger board and bridge, and sitka spruce sound board. I don't play a lick, but it was a lot of fun to make!
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    Post by mac on Thu Apr 26, 2012 8:53 pm

    Frode wrote:
    Mac, yes! Actually, I have already made one,
    and the picture in the photo is taken from an old blueprint from a
    secondary source. Mine was from a variety of sources, combined with my
    general lack of knowledge. Pin cherry body, maple finger board and
    bridge, and sitka spruce sound board. I don't play a lick, but it was a
    lot of fun to make!

    Looks good! Are you going to learn to play it? How is it tuned...fifths, DAE? Did you give it a sound post or not?

    I made a medieval fiddle a couple of years ago and I am (slowly) learning to play. Although the jurry is still out about the first introduction of sound posts, I put one in anyways. It made a tremendous difference.

    Now, if I can just find the time to learn to play my hurdy gurdy.....

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    Post by stoneagebowyer on Fri Apr 27, 2012 4:56 am

    I agree with Mac, learn to play this. And Mac, get to work on your hurdy gurdy. I've been planning to learn to make shawms (such a terrible, terrifying sound) and other medieval and ren. insturments for ages and ages. We can then start a medieval band to play at crossbow events. I should not be a hypcrite, I have a lute sitting and gathering dust I really need to learn to play.

    Hmmmmm...my status is junkie. I live here, it seems. Is this a bad thing?

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    Post by Frode on Fri Apr 27, 2012 2:25 pm

    Wow! The world gets smaller all the time! Yes, you're both right, I should learn to play, and it is
    my intent, and I have a book on fiddle playing that is supposed to be
    good, don't know how that'll work in this case, with the three
    strings...

    Hurdy Gurdy, you say, Mac! Well, what you can't see under the rebec plans are plans for a symphonie (or symphonia, or chifonie) type gurdy. That's next on my list of crazy things to try
    (the plans on the table are for a pretty elaborate model, I think I'll
    try for something a bit more modest for my first go at it)!
    Dane, I just ran across the web site of a fellow making wood bodied instruments on a foot powered pole lathe!
    There's something about medieval musical instruments that puts them right up there with crossbows, to be sure!
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    Post by stoneagebowyer on Fri Apr 27, 2012 3:55 pm

    Could you please post the link to that website? I'd love to see his work. I imagine he has reamers to get the bores for the various instruments. Shawns are cool, as are crumhorns and rackets, one of the stranger of the old instruments. I was an oboist for many years, so I have a fondness for reed instruments.

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    Post by Frode on Fri Apr 27, 2012 5:59 pm

    Here you go, Dane!
    You have to root around a bit to find everything, and it doesn't appear that the sites been updated lately, but it's still pretty interesting!
    I had at some point gotten it into my head that it would be fun to make a dulcian (so much for starting out simple, eh?), and I wanted to see if I could do it without power tools. The tapered bore had me completely stymied, until I ran across this site. He also has a nice lathe setup! I have a bungee powered reciprocating lathe, but it looks like his treadle model works better with drier wood, and a lot better for drilling.
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    Post by mac on Fri Apr 27, 2012 6:28 pm

    Frode wrote: have a book on fiddle playing that is supposed to be
    good, don't know how that'll work in this case, with the three
    strings...

    Within limits, one method book is as good as the next. What really matters is how many hours you spend practicing. I am learning on a modern (OK, 19th C ) fiddle, and spending most of my time on that. I usually play with the instrument on my shoulder, but try to play with it on my arm every now and again.

    Frode wrote:Hurdy Gurdy, you say, Mac! Well, what you can't see under the rebec plans are plans for a symphonie (or symphonia, or chifonie) type gurdy. That's next on my list of crazy things to try
    (the plans on the table are for a pretty elaborate model, I think I'll
    try for something a bit more modest for my first go at it)!

    Oh yea! ...I recognize the shape of the keys. I could not figure it out before, but now it's obvious.

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    Post by mac on Fri Apr 27, 2012 6:33 pm

    stoneagebowyer wrote: I imagine he has reamers to get the bores for the various instruments. Shawns are cool, as are crumhorns and rackets, one of the stranger of the old instruments. I was an oboist for many years, so I have a fondness for reed instruments.

    Dane

    I have a book called "The Amateur Wind Instrument Maker" by Trevor Robinson, University of Massachusetts Press, 1980.

    http://used.addall.com/SuperRare/submitRare.cgi?author=&title=The+Amateur+Wind+Instrument+Maker&keyword=&isbn=&order=PRICE&ordering=ASC&binding=Any+Binding&min=&max=&exclude=&match=Y&dispCurr=USD&timeout=20&store=ABAA&store=Alibris&store=Abebooks&store=AbebooksAU&store=AbebooksDE&store=AbebooksFR&store=AbebooksUK&store=Amazon&store=AmazonCA&store=AmazonUK&store=AmazonDE&store=AmazonFR&store=Antiqbook&store=Biblio&store=BiblioUK&store=Bibliophile&store=Bibliopoly&store=Booksandcollectibles&store=ILAB&store=Half&store=LivreRareBook&store=Powells&store=Wbm&store=ZVAB

    He deals with the question of reamers.

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    Post by stoneagebowyer on Sat Apr 28, 2012 3:18 am

    Frode, thank you!

    Mac, thank you. I purchased that book in 1987, after reading about it in Whole Earth Catalog. I have misplaced it along the way, but have been meaning to order another copy for a while now. There was a music store in Munich that carried a complete line of early musical instuments near where I was stationed I used to go to, and that got me rethinking about early music. I had even considered applying to Dominican College, near San Francisco, as they had a guy on staff who was a master early music instrument maker, but things worked out otherwise.
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    Post by mac on Wed May 02, 2012 9:03 am

    I figure that as long as I have derailed this thread, I might as well show off.

    The body is a "dug out" construction of European sycamore. The sound board is spruce. The pegs, fingerboard, tailpiece, and tailgut saddle are boxwood, and the bridge is hard maple. The string lengths are based on a modern fiddle, and it is tuned GDAE.

    If I were going to do it again, I would chose a more typical, and more rounded example to copy. The narrow "butt" of this fiddle works OK when played on the arm, but not at all well when played on the shoulder. I think further, that a fuller bodied fiddle would give more volume than this one.

    Mac

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    Post by stoneagebowyer on Wed May 02, 2012 10:25 am

    Beautiful musical instrument. Thanks for sharing this, Mac.

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    Post by mac on Thu May 03, 2012 6:29 am

    Thank you, Dane!

    Mac

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